Today's Traveller Interviews

Poonam Nair: Customer satisfaction and engagement are crucial parameters for success

In an exclusive interview with Today’s Traveller, Poonam Nair, Vice President – Sales & Marketing, Radisson Blu Udaipur Palace Resort & Spa highlights how Udaipur has become a leading global wedding destination and how the hotel is perfectly positioned to attract couples seeking a stunning locale for their nuptials.

Poonam Nair, Vice President - Sales & Marketing, Radisson Blu Udaipur Palace Resort & Spa
Poonam Nair, Vice President – Sales & Marketing, Radisson Blu Udaipur Palace Resort & Spa

TT Bureau: Can you describe the unique offerings of Radisson Blu Palace Resort Udaipur?

Poonam Nair: Radisson Blu Palace Resort and Spa, Udaipur, is one of the most versatile properties. We are the ideal choice for destination weddings, but we also organize MICE events and corporate offsites. Simultaneously, we are the go-to choice for leisure and luxury travel as well. 

What makes us unique is our strategic location. The palace offers breathtaking views of Fateh Sagar Lake, and it is near popular tourist attractions, enabling travellers to explore the city conveniently. We are known for the largest pillarless ballrooms in Udaipur, which gives us an edge and makes us the ideal destination for all kinds of events.

Our multipurpose, capacious indoor and outdoor event spaces offer mesmerizing views and serve as the perfect spot for hosting grand sundowner weddings and other related ceremonies. Our world-class facilities and top-notch hospitality complement our customer-centric approach and Atithi Devo Bhava ideology. 

We go the extra mile to understand our customers’ specific requirements and give them nothing but the best. Through our personalized and attention-to-detail approach, we try to surpass our guests’ expectations. Our constant endeavour is to provide them with best-in-class experiences and ensure their stay at the property is not just an event or a trip but a wholesome experience with crafted memories that they can cherish for their lifetime. 

TT Bureau: How has your sales and marketing strategy evolved to cater to the wedding market in recent years?

Poonam Nair: When we established the property, we knew we wanted to tap into diverse markets and simultaneously secure the leading position. Viewing from the business lens, we did not want to limit ourselves to one particular niche. Hence, our focus was the wedding industry, but we continued to explore other avenues as well. This allowed us to host MICE events, corporate events and offsites, prominent industry gatherings, etc. All this while, we ensured that our business development plans and marketing strategies aligned with this vision. Looking back in time, we are happy that this unique approach worked in our favour. 

Today, we identify ourselves as more of a leisure hotel, but the fact of the matter is that destination weddings are our core business model. We host around 70 weddings every year. Because of our reputation as the ultimate wedding venue built over the years, we have had the opportunity to host several influential and celebrity weddings, including Isha Ambani and Anand Piramal’s pre-wedding ceremony and Neil Nitin Mukesh and Rukmani’s wedding. 

Our innovative sales and marketing strategies complement our objectives and growth plans. Our sales team does a fantabulous job and seamlessly manages the business acquisition and development aspect. During peak season, they handle all the bookings. Additionally, they ensure the effective execution of revenue generation practices like demand forecasting, yield management, and dynamic pricing, which leads to optimizing room rates and inventory management.

In addition to targeted marketing initiatives, we follow a robust digital marketing strategy to promote our brand and our comprehensive suite of wedding-related services, share our achievements and milestones with the audiences, and post content to connect with our customers and attract prospective leads.

We leverage the power of social media and content to share recent event glimpses, behind-the-scenes shots, tailored venue set-ups, thematic decor, customer reviews, etc. Small steps like these go a long way in not only boosting brand awareness and building a strong online brand presence but also solidifying our position as a prominent wedding destination in the market. 

TT Bureau: What trends are you currently seeing in destination weddings at Udaipur, and how is Radisson Blu adapting to these trends?

Poonam Nair: Udaipur is well positioned on the global wedding tourism map. Over time, it has become a hotspot for destination weddings.

From 90s superstar Raveena Tandon and businessman Anil Thadani to Bollywood actress Parineeti Chopra and AAP politician Raghav Chadha, people have chosen Udaipur to exchange their vows and celebrate their union with their near and dear ones. This trend has been gaining momentum as more and more people are drawn to the region because of its picturesque lakes, alluring landscapes, majestic palaces, unmatched hospitality, and rich cultural heritage. 

India has always been a big fat wedding market. People want lavish weddings and celebrate their D-day with grandeur and opulence.

With Udaipur growing as a destination wedding spot, we try to stay abreast with the ongoing developments in the wedding and wedding tourism industries. We understand that every wedding is a unique experience, interwoven with the fabric of diversity in cultural traditions and authentic experiences. With the customers’ demands evolving rapidly, we put our best foot forward to fulfil their requirements. We listen patiently to their preferences and then share our suggestions/recommendations.

We also offer exclusive, tailor-made wedding packages to meet their specific demands. Our wedding concierge facility provides relief to couples and host families from the stress of wedding planning and enables them to enjoy the festivities. Value-added services like romantic candlelight dinner set-ups, royal welcome, butler services, royal backdrops, etc., further help us provide superior experiences to couples and guests. 

Moreover, our dedicated customer service team is there to assist the couple and their families at every step. The staff makes concerted efforts to transform every wedding-related ceremony into an exquisite, memorable experience.

Whether it is a thematic event, incorporating personal memories and moments of couples in the decor, a lavish menu spread comprising a variety of global culinary delights and authentic local cuisines, catering to special requests like sourcing a specific variety of flowers, arranging artist performances, or curating interactive experiences for guests, we ensure the arrangements are superior, regal, and mesmerizing that mirror the couple’s vision of their dream wedding. 

Radisson Blu Udaipur Palace Resort & Spa
Radisson Blu Udaipur Palace Resort & Spa

TT Bureau: Could you share a memorable wedding event hosted at Radisson Blu Palace Resort and what made it special?

Poonam Nair: Honestly, every wedding that we host is a different experience altogether. Helping couples transform their dream weddings into reality is pure bliss. The peace and solace that we find in being a part of their celebration as the couples tie the knot can only be felt and can’t be described in words. By God’s grace, we have gotten the opportunity to host several high-end and celebrity weddings, including Isha Ambani and Anand Piramal’s pre-wedding ceremony and Neil Nitin Mukesh and Rukmani’s wedding. 

To share an instance, for a recent wedding that we organized, the couple requested a traditional wedding with contemporary elements and experiences. We drew inspiration for the decor from our rich cultural heritage. The hues were the classic combination of maroon and gold to showcase the true essence of royalty and elegance. We also set up low seated thaats along with majestic velvet couches.

Additionally, we incorporated elements in catering like requesting local females to make live phulkas, kulhad chai walas and chaach walas to serve fresh beverages the traditional way. The meals were prepared and served in premium earthenware to enhance guests’ regional culinary experiences.

Additionally, we also tied up with local artists and performers for entertainment performances during the evenings to add to the festivities with vibrant folk performances and puppet and magic shows. Another instance is the NRI Punjabi wedding that we hosted, most attendees were from Australia and the US, the entire look and feel of the set-up were so divine they had converted the place into a mini Gurudwara. It was surreal to witness a proper Sikh wedding. So yes, we have many such instances of memorable weddings.

TT Bureau: What role does customer feedback play in shaping your sales strategies?

Poonam Nair: Customer-centricity forms the very core of our operations. Their wish is our command, and we are willing to go above and beyond to meet their demands. This is reflected in our best-in-class hospitality, our amicable staff, and a wide array of palatial services. We first listen to their requirements and requests and give our recommendations accordingly.

We strongly believe that customer satisfaction and engagement are crucial parameters for success. Hence, their feedback is integral to shaping our sales strategies and enhancing our customer servicing approach.

This is why, we have a dedicated section on the website wherein our valuable customers can share their feedback on our overall arrangements, guest experiences, and even our tech platforms. In most cases, the guests are more than happy to share one-on-one feedback during their stay. Otherwise, we get feedback forms and surveys filled out by them later. The idea is to introduce channels that help us better evaluate our services so that we can improve and give our customers nothing but the best-in-class services and unparalleled hospitality.

Read more: Today’s Traveller Interviews